The last story in C. S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia is called The Last Battle. It starts out with a talking ape named Shift, and a talking donkey named Puzzle. Shift is very clever and Puzzle is not so clever and he is pretty much the ape’s slave, doing everything he tells him to. They find a dead lion, and Shift takes the skin of it and puts it on Puzzle to make him look like Aslan from a distance. Shift acts as Aslan’s mouthpiece and starts ordering the talking beasts to clear the forests alongside Calormen solders that have been sneaking to the north a few at a time. When the last king on Narnia, Tirian, and his best friend, Jewel the unicorn, find out that the nyads and dryads (the living souls of the trees) are being murdered, they fly out in a hastened rage to find out who is to blame. When they hear that Aslan is the one ordering such terrible acts, they find themselves at a loss as to what to do.
The next to last story is called The Silver Chair. It starts out with Eustace finding his friend, Jill, crying because the school bullies are picking on her. At their school, the Experiment House, the people who ran it thought that kids “should be allowed to do what they liked,” and unfortunately there were a group of kids who did horrible things and picked on other kids mercilessly. Instead of getting expelled, they were talked to by the Head who didn’t punish them but treated the situations as “interesting psychological cases.” Well, it is in the middle of chase from the bullies that Eustace and Jill are taken from the Experiment House to a tremendous cliff in the other world. It is there that Jill receives a task from Aslan:
The next story, called The Dawn Treader, involves the two youngest Pevensie children, Edmund and Lucy, and their cousin Eustace. Eustace is an odd child who goes to a school called the Experiment House, and he calls his mom and dad by their first names. He’s rather obnoxious and he proves to be even more of a nuisance when he and his cousins are pulled into Narnia where he’s exposed to talking beasts for the first time. They find themselves thrown in the ocean, and rescued by King Caspian and his crew on the Dawn Treader.
The next book in C.S. Lewis’ series is Prince Caspian. In this story, Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy Pevensie find themselves being drawn back into Narnia to find their old home, the castle of Cair Paravel, in ruins. Narnian years work differently than time in our world, so that many hundreds of years have passed when only a year has passed in the Pevensie’s world. They meet a dwarf who starts telling them the story of Prince Caspian and the danger he’s in.
The third story is called The Horse and His Boy. It’s about a boy named Shasta who lives with his fisherman father in a land far south of Narnia, called Calormen. This story takes place during the reign of King Peter, Queen Susan, King Edmund, and Queen Lucy from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. The land of Calormen reminds me of some middle eastern land, where the men wear turbans, the women wear veils, and they are darker skinned. The fisherman receives a visit from a Calormene lord, or Tarkaan, and Shasta eavesdrops and finds out that the fisherman is not really his father, and the Tarkaan wants to buy Shasta as his slave. Shasta runs to the stable to find the Tarkaan’s horse is actually a talking horse from Narnia, named Bree. They both want to escape to Narnia, and so the horse and his boy embark on adventures to get to the North.
The thing that inspired me to read these stories in the first place was seeing the preview for the moving coming out this December. I remembered seeing an older, sort of boring t.v. version of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, but this new one, with all the special effects, looks really exciting.
Yesterday I finished the last book in C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia. Good stuff! Lewis is from England, and so his use of language is a bit different, but also fun to say out loud in a British accent. Things like, “Hullo,” and distasteful things or behavior being “beastly” are a few examples.
Even though The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe was written first, I decided to read the books in the order of chronological Narnian time. And so I began my first adventure in The Magician’s Nephew.